Happy New Year… a new year, a new start

I know… this is hardly the start of the year, is it?  I have an excuse though. Since New Year’s Day I have been suffering with a vile cough and cold, which seems to me to be really unfair. OK, if I was still in the U.K. in the depths of winter… but here? In the heat and the sunshine? I have spent the last two weeks, moaning and coughing but I am finally feeling slightly more clear headed and sounding less like a chesty old pit pony.

Time to start again.

When I look back on 2011, from where I am now… well, it seems unbelievable.  At the start of that year we had no idea that we would  be moving anywhere, never mind half way round the world.  I suppose if I had thought of moving it would have been to a house, instead of our apartment, because I had been longing for an outside oven. I would have thought I’d have carried on cooking things like Beef and Ale Casserole with dumplings. or maybe the glorious Black Pudding and Haggis on Apple Mash (after all, it will soon be Burns’ Night again) or, or of our favourites, Bacon and Apple Risotto with Black Pudding. Everything rich and delicious and sustaining to get us through the cold and the snow.

I’d have been glad of the cold as we tucked into Jansson’s Temptation, my favourite potato dish ever. Maybe I’d have been making slimming soups, like Skinny Tomato Soup , in an attempt to lose weight after eating all of that lovely hearty food…

I would wake up and look out of our windows, in our apartment, down onto the frosty city below

And yet here we are, a year later, living just off the Equator, steaming gently in the Tropical heat. Now I wake up to dawn, over a vibrant city, with the Petronas Towers appearing through the mist.

I’m cooking things like Rendang terlagi-lagi and Sambal santan udang. I’m buying things in markets that I have no idea what they are and then trying to work out what to do with them later.

Some things are the same, though. I look ahead to the rest of the year, knowing that THIS will be the year that I get thin and fit….I’ve had that as a resolution for years. And I haven’t done it.

Maybe I will this time. After all, we are living in a place where I can swim each day (and that means, of course, putting on a swimming costume. Not a good look at the moment, I admit)


The fruit and vegetables here in Malaysia are incredible….. there’s an abundance of fish and seafood. All of which are fresh and tasty. All of which are just waiting for me to try.

And we have a wonderful new space, with a lovely, large dining table so we can invite our friends round….

We can sit ten round there (OK, ten at a push. Comfortably, we can seat eight) and I have two large kitchens to work in. My old friends back home can come out to visit and my new friends here can come round to eat.

It’s all such a change from Nottingham!

If we can go through so much change in one short year, I wonder what can happen in the coming year?

What WILL happen is that I am going to cook more and write more. There are so many delicious things to experiment with here, so many wonderfully tasty recipes to tell you about and, I have to say, so many things I cooked last year and didn’t have time to tell you about.

This year there’ll be a mix of Southeast Asian and British dishes as I look back at what I’ve done and look ahead to new experiences.

My resolutions, therefore, are to explore, remember, taste, experiment, enjoy and, most of all, to tell you all about everything!

Happy Belated New Year!




9 thoughts on “Happy New Year… a new year, a new start”

  1. looks like a fab year ahead Wendy 🙂 life is certainly very different in KL but it will be enriching and hopefully you can do justice to a bikini before the year ends…wishing you happy swimming in the tropic sunshine and a great tan too !!

  2. So happy to hear that you are getting better.
    Enjoy the heat for the New Year as we are in a deep freeze near Ottawa.

  3. Yay!! More recipes and stories to look forward to! Happy New Year to you too! Hope it’s a healthy one! 🙂

  4. It’s amazing what can happen in a year! A tale like yours gives hope to the rest of us haha 🙂 how beautiful is your dining space?!

    Looking forward to reading your blog posts for 2012, Wendy! 🙂 x

  5. Big changes meant big chunks of time going missing as we tried to sort everything out. Now things are almost settled… well, there’s no excuse, is there? And I’m certainly not going to be doing a trans-continental move again this year!

  6. Looking forward to more blogs and hearing about your lovely experiences in the tropical sunshine. Has given Sonny and I a view of a part of the world we most likely will never see unless we win the lottery, of course. Keep the receipes coming alhough some am sure we will never be able to duplicate but fun all the same. XXXX

  7. Happy New Year to you and Bear. Hope it is as exciting as the last one. Looking forward to lots of interesting posts this year x

  8. happy new year to you and bear, i felt the same the starting of this year, to see how much my life changed just in one night! changes are sudden buts brings a lot of hope! Wish you have a fantastic year and good luck with resolutions, I have also started yoga to wake myself up 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *